Articles | Volume 18, issue 12
Research article
11 Dec 2014
Research article |  | 11 Dec 2014

A virtual water network of the Roman world

B. J. Dermody, R. P. H. van Beek, E. Meeks, K. Klein Goldewijk, W. Scheidel, Y. van der Velde, M. F. P. Bierkens, M. J. Wassen, and S. C. Dekker


Interactive discussion

Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
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Peer-review completion

AR: Author's response | RR: Referee report | ED: Editor decision
ED: Publish as is (25 Nov 2014) by Junguo Liu
AR by Brian Dermody on behalf of the Authors (25 Nov 2014)  Manuscript 
Short summary
Our virtual water network of the Roman World shows that virtual water trade and irrigation provided the Romans with resilience to interannual climate variability. Virtual water trade enabled the Romans to meet food demands from regions with a surplus. Irrigation provided stable water supplies for agriculture, particularly in large river catchments. However, virtual water trade also stimulated urbanization and population growth, which eroded Roman resilience to climate variability over time.